Kent County Farmer Fred Stites Takes Top Honors in Delaware Soybean Yield Contest

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Fred Stites of Kent County, Delaware had the state’s top 2018 yield in the Delaware Soybean Board's Yield Contest with 78.81 bushels per acre of full season soybeans.

Rick Davis, Cory Atkins and Fred Stites are pictured during Agronomy Day at Delaware Ag Week in Harrington, Del.

Rick Davis, Cory Atkins and Fred Stites are pictured during Agronomy Day at Delaware Ag Week in Harrington, Del.

2018 was a challenging year with the weather and the decreased yields reflected it. We encourage growers to participate in the contest to make more production data available for farmers to use in planning next season.

Fred Stites of Kent County had the state’s top 2018 soybean yield with 78.81 bushels per acre of full season soybeans. The field was no-till and Stites used Pioneer P35T58 seed.

Mark Collins of Sussex County won the statewide double crop competition with 67.98 bushels per acre. Collins planted Dekalb 4135 following corn, which had been cover cropped with rye.

The contest was created by the Delaware Soybean Board to gather data on practices incorporated in producing high soybean yields while recognizing the individuals who have achieved such yields. The goal is for the information gathered in the contest to help increase yields for all farmers across the state. Full contest information and results summary can be found on the DSB website.

“2018 was a challenging year with the weather and the decreased yields reflected it,” stated Cory Atkins, chairman of the Delaware Soybean Board. “We encourage growers to participate in the contest to make more production data available for farmers to use in planning next season.”

County winners for full season soybeans included Daniel Palmer of Kent County with 78.48 bushels per acre and Jesse Ellis of Sussex County with 68.70 bushels per acre. Winners at the county level for double crop beans included Joe Calhoun of Sussex County with 63.16 bushels per acre and Grier Stayton of Kent County with 61.73 bushels per acre. There were no entries completed in New Castle County this year.

Atkins announced the awards during Agronomy Day at Delaware Ag Week in Harrington. The state top yield winners in full season and double crop categories received $1,000 and each of the county winners received $250.

Delaware farmers plant about 180,000 acres of soybeans each year, and the crop generates approximately $60 million in value to the state. Delaware’s agricultural industry contributes about $8 billion per year to the Delaware economy.

The Delaware Soybean Board is funded by the national soybean checkoff program, which assesses one-half of one percent of the net market value of soybeans at the first point of sale. The Board consists of nine farmer-directors and the Secretary of Agriculture, and administers the federal soybean checkoff programs in Delaware supporting research, marketing and education programs to benefit the soybean industry.

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Susanne Zilberfarb
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